Adventures With Autism and Adopting a Healthier Lifestyle

So, basically, antibiotics made my daughter a stimming, screeching, hyper, emotional, insomniac mess.

Emily had an upper and lower respiratory infection. DH had bronchitis, and what I had wasn’t given a title (though, they said it was close to becoming pneumonia). We were all given antibiotics.

Let’s just say, Emily didn’t react well to hers. She has been very “symptomatic,” I guess you could say.

Let’s put it this way: if she was like this at her evaluation, she wouldn’t have the words “mild to moderate” on her Autism diagnosis.

We’re talking: twitches, flapping, odd (for her) posturing, tics, random giggle fits (maniacal/creepy laughter at times), random screaming/screeching, bursting into tears at the drop of a hat, awake until wee hours (even compared to her usual “night owl” bedtime), less “useful language” (I’ve come to hate that term, but bear with me), much more scripting. Most consistent and noticeable has been her using a TON more echolalia; in fact, this week, she has basically repeated everything I asked her, rather than answering me.

I feel worse for her than me (although, to be honest, it’s been very rough for me, also). She seems completely aware of the fact that she’s acting differently than her usual. She’ll let out a screech, then get this surprised look on her face, as if to ask “why’d I do that?” This is happening to her, she’s not doing this stuff for fun.

The conclusion I’ve come to is that Emily’s probiotics do a lot more good than I’d been giving them credit for. You see, DH had the idea that she shouldn’t be on pro- and anti- at the same time. For some reason, I agreed to that. Yes, me, the one who’ll be in the medical field in a few months.

Yeah, so, a lesson learned the hard way: probiotics can and HAVE TO (in our case) be continued (perhaps increased!) when antibiotics are given.

Her good bacteria were killed off along with her infection. The loss of that good bacteria in the gut caused digestive upset, maybe even pain.

This version of Emily then came into our home. It has literally been like having a different child. Very hard to adjust to.

If her Autism “symptoms” were this intense all the time, I’d be in more of a groove and have some idea how to manage and prevent certain behaviors. As it stands right now, though, I’m completely lost and overwhelmed.

The final antibiotic dose was given the night before last, so now we’re sort of in “detox” mode, trying to get Emily back to being herself. In the meantime, certain things are getting worse… part of “exorcising” whatever she has going on in her system.

I’m about ready to bust out Holy Water and a Bible!


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